Joe O’Brien TD, Minister of State at the Department of Rural and Community Development is pleased to confirm that he has secured €2 million to design & implement a new programme aimed at specifically targeting area-based deprivation through a community development approach.
The new programme is an initiative put forth by Minister O’Brien in response to the issues arising during his visits with communities across Ireland. It, in part, stems from a Programme for Government commitment to expand the Dublin North East Inner City model. The initiative was supported by the Taoiseach, Minister Humphreys and Minister Michael McGrath. The Empowering Communities Programme (ECP) will identify a number of areas experiencing concentrated social exclusion & disadvantage & will focus on capacity building in the community.
Confirming funding for the Empowering Communities Programme, Minister O’Brien said:
This programme will focus on supporting communities to develop and help implement tailored community work responses to the specific challenges faced locally. Its aim is to empower local communities to craft their own response to area based poverty, social exclusion and the resulting consequences, with the support of the Local Community Development Committee. The ECP will focus on augmenting the efforts of a small number of areas that have been identified by the Pobal HP Deprivation Index as areas of particular disadvantage.
“The ECP will also be calling on other government Departments and local State services to strengthen their approach in the local communities that the programme will focus on. The development of the programme will be informed by other initiatives supported by the Department such as the Community Development Pilot Programme, the Place-Based Leadership initiative and the Social Inclusion & Community Activation Programme which operates across the country.”